So, the Delhi legislators will finally get Rs. 3.2 Lakh every month. This after, Delhi Assembly today approved a nearly four times pay hike that was proposed in October 2015.
Once enacted, Delhi’s lawmakers will be the country’s highest paid.
To add to the public fury, consider this fact: The basic salary of lawmakers, without allowances, will go up from Rs. 12,000 per month to Rs. 50,000, while ministers will get Rs. 80,000 instead of Rs. 20,000 earlier.
Allowances will be increased 10 per cent annually.
Does these facts baffle you too?
Lets not get angry and instead see the logic behind the hike.
Why not see politics as any other profession!
Lets not see politics as social service and; instead see it as any other profession.
And many say, Why?
Because if we see politics and lawmaking as social service, expecting nothing in return; then we are assuming that politicians & lawmakers have other sources of income. Which is not possible, as we also see politics as a full-time profession.
If we assume that, the lawmakers have other sources of income, while devoting 24 hours a day to politics, then we are assuming that they will be earning that money by corrupt means.
Seeing a lawmaker (legislator or parliamentarian) a selfless guy, also means that we want those people enter into politics, who are either traditionally rich or who have earned substantial money to live their lives as a selfless politician. This means we don’t want young people to enter politics; or we are subconsciously vouching for people who earned quick money before entering politics.
And finally, when we oppose such salary hikes, we are sending a message that our Lawmakers don’t deserve such salaries. This means we’re questioning their merit. This in itself means we are choosing low caliber people to represent us. If we see our lawmakers as individuals with merit then we wouldn’t be questioning the 3.2 Lakh per month salary; as senior executives in MNCs and Companies are drawing much more salary than that.
I think, we must welcome the salary hike. It will ensure a corruption-free environment among lawmakers. At least those lawmakers who want to stay clean, can choose to do so. After all, you can’t take guarantee of all individuals in any profession.
As voters we must stop seeing our law makers or politicians as serving the Nation (‘Desh Seva’). In addition, we should also stop seeing our support for a candidate as a big grace or favour bestowed by us on the candidate. We have not. We wanted a good representative for ourselves, and that’s why we cast our vote in that candidate’s favour.
To conclude, although the argument put forward by various Party leaders that the lawmakers don’t earn enough to run their homes & offices, and accommodate common joes visiting them from their constituencies, is quite valid; lets not use it to dilute debate. As this way we will strengthen the argument that the Lawmakers must be paid only that much, which takes care of such expenses. When the fact of the matter is, any person with merit, has a right to high payouts.